Information for Students

If you are thinking of studying with us, we have lots of helpful information to get you started and make the most of studying with The Culinary Collective.

Before you apply

The Culinary Collective is New Zealand’s premium culinary school located in Auckland and Hamilton. We are a member of the NZMA family, a Category One Provider, and form part of the largest vocational education group in New Zealand, UP Education.

At The Culinary Collective we are committed to offering quality learning. We are ranked as a Category 1 provider on NZQA’s EER rating which is the best rating possible for providers.

This means that we are on the highest tier of private tertiary educators and operate under a four year NZQA External Evaluation and Review (EER) cycle. The Culinary Collective is part of NZMA. NZMA’s most recent EER was in 2022, where we retained our Category 1 status.

Click here to read the full report.

NZMA’s 2023 Code of Practice Self-review document


Post applying

We’ll contact you to arrange a time to meet with one of our course advisors to discuss your study options and take a tour of the campus. Once you’ve been accepted into a course, we’ll issue your official acceptance letter and you can then apply for a student loan and/or allowance through Studylink.

If you’re moving to Auckland or Hamilton from out of town to study with us (or you’re just plain itching to move out of home), we can help you find accommodation. 

Flatting is usually the cheapest option. If you move into an already-established flat you probably won’t have to put your name on the tenancy agreement. This makes it easier to move out when you want to.

Here are some great websites to get you started:

If you’d prefer to rent a property yourself, StudyLink may be able to help with start-up costs like the bond. 

Once you’ve found a property you’re interested in, book an appointment with them. Prepare a budget to show them so they can see whether or not you can afford to pay the rent. Also take in your tenancy agreement. A tenancy agreement (or lease) is a binding contract, so it’s important you don’t sign anything (or even verbally agree to anything) until you’re sure it’s what you want. 

There are two types of leases – fixed term or periodical. In a fixed term lease you’re responsible for the property (and paying the rent) for the agreed time period. If your circumstances change and you need to move out, it’s still up to you to pay the rent until you find someone the property manager agrees to, who is willing to take over the lease. With a periodical lease, you just need to give three weeks notice if you want to move out.

For more information about your rights and responsibilities as a tenant check out or call 0800 tenancy (838362) Take a look at these websites for some good rental properties: (property).

Most of our classes have between 20 and 25 students. 



Courses vary, for a list of domestic course costs, click here. For international costs, click here.

You may be eligible for Fees Free study if you are: a New Zealander or resident of New Zealand; a recent secondary school leaver; or not a recent secondary school leaver but have undertaken less than half a year of tertiary study or training. To check if you are eligible you can use the tool on the fees-free website.

If you’re a New Zealand or Australian citizen or a Permanent Resident then you can apply for a student loan and/or allowance. Your Course Advisor will be able to help guide you through the application process and answer any questions you might have.

The Culinary Collective operates under the strict NZQA student fee protection policy as required by the New Zealand Government. Student fees are protected in the unlikely event that The Culinary Collective is unable to deliver a student’s tuition.

If a student withdraws within eight working days of their course starting they’ll be refunded all their tuition fees, less $500.

If a student withdraws on day nine or later of the course, they would only be eligible for a refund in exceptional circumstances, at the discretion of the Head of Operations – NZMA Group.

Students must submit their application for a refund within one month of the last day they attended. No refund will be made if the student has been expelled, wants to transfer to another school, or has not filled out an accurate enrolment application and has had their contract terminated.

If NZMA receives student fees via an education consultant or directly from a member of a student’s family, we’ll endeavour to refund fees to the party that paid them.

If we’re aware that a student has obtained a bank loan to attend The Culinary Collective, we’ll endeavour to refund fees to the relevant lending bank unless otherwise instructed by that bank.

Any refund of fees which were paid by a student loan will be paid directly to StudyLink.

Each year The Culinary Collective (Part of NZMA)  provides a range of services to students to enhance campus life and student wellbeing.  These services are provided over and above the teaching and education delivery at each campus and are funded through the Compulsory Student Services Fee (CSSF). The fee funds key services such as:

  • Careers advice, guidance and employment information

  • Counselling services

  • Advocacy and Legal Advice

  • Financial support and advice 

  • Sport, Recreation and cultural services

  • Health Services

The Culinary Collective, as part of NZMA, has consulted with students on the Student Services Levy for 2022. The CSSF will remain at $400 per Equivalent Full Time Student.

As part of the Ministry of Education’s direction, we are required to report on how these fees are charged and spent which is available in the NZMA annual report. We must include students or their representatives when deciding on the following: 

  • Maximum amount that students will pay 

  • Types of services delivered 

  • Procurement of these services 

  • Method for authorising expenditure on these services.

To find out more contact your Campus Manager or you can read our latest CSSF Report here.



That’s induction week! You’ll get to meet your classmates, learn about the campus and have a whole lot of fun. We’ll also outline our rules and regulations and you’ll sit some evaluations. This will help your tutors tailor their teaching style to best suit your needs.

We offer a range of campus events and activities including Tasters days, sports day, kapa haka and other cultural days and activities during the induction period to engage and build relationships with your classmates.  Whānau days are also held where you can invite friends and family to learn about student life on campus.

NZQA has released a series of videos outlining what support people can expect for their wellbeing and safety while undertaking tertiary study. Watch the videos here.

If you are experiencing any issues that you feel are hindering your learning experience, please contact your Course Advisor for support.

Each campus has a team of Course Advisors to make sure you succeed in your studies and achieve your goals. To meet or speak with a student support advisor please contact your closest campus here.

As well as asking your course advisors for referral information, you might like to contact some places yourself:

  • Citizens Advice Bureau – their lovely staff can provide help and support. They have an onsite Justice of the Peace who can verify copies of important documents. Phone 0800 367222.

  • Tenancy Advice – usually when you go flatting in New Zealand you have to sign a contract or a lease. If you have any questions about your rights and regulations as a tenant, contact a NZMA Student Enrolment Advisor or call the tenancy phone line on 0800 TENANCY (0800 83 62 62).

  • YouthLaw – for free answers to your legal questions phone 0800 UTHLAW (884 529).

Our Career and Employment navigators will help you with valuable job hunting skills, like CV writing and interview techniques, help you find part-time work while you study and full-time work once you graduate. We partner with many of New Zealand’s leading employers – you’ll meet lots of them through our seminars, career days, work experience opportunities and industry functions.



The School/College has a set procedure to resolve complaints. 

If the complaint is unable to be resolved satisfactorily within the School/College it can be taken to the Campus Principal/Manager.

Full details can be found in the student handbook. If it is still not resolved then the complaint can be taken to NZQA. If you have a financial or contractual dispute NZQA will refer you to the Student Dispute Resolution Scheme (DRS) Operator.

The NZQA website gives instructions on how to make a complaint about a provider/use the DRS, click here to go to the page.

You can also contact NZQA at or 0800 697 296 for information on the process.

NZMA is part of Up Education and is ranked a Category 1 provider by NZQA – which is their highest rating.

The Executive Team and Board are responsible for the governance of the organisation. The Board meets monthly to:

  • Discuss NZMA’s strategic direction

  • Review financial performance

  • Determine business objectives

  • Select management to operationalise policies and objectives

The Senior Management Team (comprised of the Chief Executive and Directors) communicates daily, and takes care of the on-going operations of the business.



Ready to take the next step?